Following his former partner Edge having to retire and to give up the World Heavyweight Championship, Christian had to win a battle royal on Smackdown! in order to win the right to face Del Rio. Christian put a lot of pressure on himself as the ladder match is one he has been in many times, making it feel like it was finally the right time for him to win the championship. With Del Rio going over to Monday Night RAW following Extreme Rules, even more pressure was put on Christian to keep the title on the blue brand.
What made the match so memorable was that despite Christian being in several ladder matches in the past this one did not feel like any other Christian had been in. Perhaps the addition of Del Rio, who had only been in one ladder match prior helped, but Christian also displayed several different ladder tricks that he has never used before.
The last 10 minutes of the match was quite possibly the best ending to a match in a long time. Christian not only had to battle Del Rio, but Del Rio’s personal ring announcer Ricardo Rodriguez and Del Rio’s protege Brodus Clay. Although blood is not seen much on WWE home video as of late, Christian busted open Clay with a hard ladder shot. Clay is lying in a pool of his own blood afterwards. Christian also receives several cuts during the match, but nothing too severe. It is a wonder to how Del Rio can still stand after he took a surprising leap of faith from the top rope onto a ladder on the outside. Another of many reasons why the match is a must-see. The DVD includes an exclusive interview with Christian following the event.
In other action, John Cena finally recaptured the WWE Championship after almost a year without holding the title. Cena had to do battle with The Miz and John Morrison in a steel cage match. While Cena was able to get Miz to tap out to his STF submission hold, Morrison looked like he was going to win the match until R-Truth interfered.
With every match given an extreme stipulation the event was quite different compared to WrestleMania XXVII but in a good way. Almost every match felt important in some way due to the extreme stipulations. Rey Mysterio against Cody Rhodes is one of the must-see matches along with the first and only appearance on WWE home video of the giant Kharma as she took out Michelle McCool, who also made her last appearance with WWE at this event.
WWE: Extreme Rules 2011 may have been the best follow-up to a WrestleMania in WWE history. There was no Rock or Stone Cold, but WWE showed with their core roster that they can put on a show that can be unforgettable any day of the week. This is one of the most highly recommended DVDs WWE has released this year. If you have not seen it as a wrestling fan you should watch it and enjoy it ASAP.
WWE: Extreme Rules 2011
Runtime of 180 minutes
Released on May 31, 2011
WWE: Extreme Rules 2011 card
Last Man Standing Match: Randy Orton vs. C.M. Punk
Tables Match: United States Champion Sheamus vs. Kofi Kingston
Country Whipping Match: Jerry Lawler & Jim Ross vs. Michael Cole & Jack Swagger
Falls Count Anywhere Match: Rey Mysterio vs. Cody Rhodes
No Disqualification/No Count Out/Loser Leaves WWE Match: Layla vs. Michelle McCool
World Championship/Ladder Match – Christian VS. Alberto Del Rio
Lumberjack Match: Tag Team Champions Big Show & Kane vs. The Corre
Steel Cage Match: WWE Champion The Miz (c) vs. John Cena vs. John Morrison